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Opposition to Chick-fil-A


Wednesday, February 13, 2013
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In a time filled with hope and progress for the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community, it is disheartening to see Chick-fil-A opening its doors in Santa Barbara. Here’s why:

As part of its corporate policy, all Chick-fil-A franchises are required to pay half of their net profits back to Chick-fil-A, Inc., in part, to support its WinShape Foundation. This Foundation has donated nearly $5 million to aggressively anti-gay organizations such as Family Research Council, Eagle Forum, and Exodus International – groups that support, among other things, gay “reparative therapy” for youth and Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill.

This is not a “live and let live” issue by any stretch of the imagination, which is the way some defenders of the restaurant chain have tried to position it. Real people are being harmed. This has nothing to do with free speech, or personal beliefs and values. People making that argument are missing the point; Santa Barbara dollars are now directly helping to finance anti-gay organizations.

While local franchise owner Carol Ruiz seems to believe corporate giving to hate groups has slowed or stopped, Chick-fil-A’s President/CEO Dan Cathy counters that assertion in this recent statement: “There continues to be erroneous implications in the media that Chick-fil-A changed our practices and prioritie … Chick-fil-A made no such concessions, and we remain true to who we are and who we have been.”

Yes, people have the right to eat where they want. Santa Barbara consumers also have a right to know what their dollars are supporting and make informed decisions. I have faith in my city, that when all the information is out there, many will choose to eat elsewhere.

The LGBT fight is not just for equal protection under the law, but also for our dignity and recognition as a valid and valued segment of society. However, this is not a fight we can win on our own. We need the support of our friends, family members, neighbors, community, and city. We are certainly not trying to tell anyone what to do, as some have suggested. We are simply asking people to learn the facts and to consider the consequences of spending money at Chick-fil-A.

While “standing in line” with us may not lead to a chicken sandwich, we can promise our gratitude and nothing less than a better world for future generations.

David Selberg is the executive director of the Pacific Pride Foundation.

Comments

Independent Discussion Guidelines

We need to get the Thought Police mobilized without delay to interview all local business owners to ensure that they qualify to operate in Santa Barbara by their support of LGBT issues - to restrict this requirement to Chick Fil-A is discriminatory. Support for policies destructive to the health and welfare of any class of SB resident, including defamation and violation of their rights under federal, state, or local law, should be restricted to policies that apply only to people who have no voice and represent no threat of litigation.

14noscams (anonymous profile)
February 13, 2013 at 9:52 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Yawn, at least the author believes it to be a "vote with your feet" issue and not something forced on us by our city leaders. Just as Cathy has a right to give to organizations of his choosing, so do members of Pacific Pride.

I just hope that members of the Catholic church and the Boy Scouts can walk down the street without being called "hate mongers".

Botany (anonymous profile)
February 13, 2013 at 10:04 p.m. (Suggest removal)

You can be the manager of a Chickl Fill-A, I'd rather be the Pope, the Dope.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 13, 2013 at 10:17 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Any restaurant closed on Sunday is going to have a tough time paying the rent.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 13, 2013 at 11:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

billclausen (anonymous profile)
February 14, 2013 at 1:59 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Things must be going pretty well for gays if they are upset about an American expressing his 1st Amendment rights while running a successful business that does not discriminate against gays.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
February 14, 2013 at 5:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

3 percent of the population, 90 percent of the hot air

redbunz (anonymous profile)
February 14, 2013 at 6:19 a.m. (Suggest removal)

People who support diversity really need to support the idea that EVERYONE can freely have their own opinions and lifestyles. (Which is how I understand the Constitution.).

One doesn't have to agree with their view and one doesn't have to eat there. In my view, they are just one company with an opinion. Live and let live.

P.S. if it matters to anyone, I support gay rights AND eat at Chick-a-Fil.

passagerider (anonymous profile)
February 14, 2013 at 5:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@italiansurg, @passagerider

The author even specifically writes: "This has nothing to do with free speech, or personal beliefs and values. People making that argument are missing the point; Santa Barbara dollars are now directly helping to finance anti-gay organizations."

The opinion of the CEO of CFA brought scrutiny to the company, but the issue itself is not one about him expressing his personal views on gay lifestyles. It's about the corporate policy of CFA, and the *actions* taken, donating money to groups/issues that take part in actively seeking to harm people who are gay.

equus_posteriori (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 7:40 a.m. (Suggest removal)

That's a really broad brush you're painting them with. Many companies donate mony to charitable and non-profit organizations. Winshape is just one.

Are you going to accuse everyone that drops a $20 into the collection plate at their local church of supporting hate or seeking to do harm to people that are gay?

Botany (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 7:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Not every church and in fact most churches nowadays don't "support hate". You have your Westboros, and that Pat Robertson goon, but they are a shrinking minority within the national Christian community as older generations die off and newer ones either evolve within or without the faith.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 12:55 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Rationally spoken equus - first amendment rights and thought police are red herrings.

And to those who missed it, Selberg's 5th paragraph is important to note:

"Yes, people have the right to eat where they want. Santa Barbara consumers also have a right to know what their dollars are supporting and make informed decisions."

Nuff said.

EastBeach (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 1:19 p.m. (Suggest removal)

When it comes down to brass tacks, consumers go where they get the best deals and the best prices. Have you seen the lines coming out of Chik-Fil-A?

It's like the unions trying to get people not to shop at Wal-Mart because they shut the unions out. In the end, it's the product and the price that consumers decide on, not much else matters.

Botany (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 8:45 p.m. (Suggest removal)

There's variety of reasons to oppose WalMart, look at the trail soceo-economic devastation they've left across the country.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 9:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

But give people enough Chinese rope..

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 9:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

If anyone knows about any pickets that are going to happen outside of Chick-fil-A, please let us know. I know a number of people who will show up. The owner of CFA has such a vendetta against GLBTs.

esyoung805 (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 10:12 p.m. (Suggest removal)

People mistake this for a local business because it is a franchise. Apparently Ruiz hasn't even lived for a long while til she decided to open yet another corporate entity in our community, and one with a horrible record in the human rights department to boot.
Eat local.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 11:06 p.m. (Suggest removal)

*lived here. (typos and wireless dropouts, another good reason to allow users to edit their own posts. Spell check only looks for misspelled words, not misplaced and missing ones Mr/s. Webmaster.)

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 17, 2013 at 11:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I had a breakfast sandwich this morning. Pretty good.
While I support KV's point of view about eating local, convenience and time got the best of me today and the last I heard the folks working there are locals. The place is a clear upgrade from the depressing BK that could not make a go of the location.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
February 18, 2013 at 11:22 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Tho as a childhood fanatic of Burger King, the old now closed location on upper State cured me of that right quick.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 18, 2013 at 1:19 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Equus seems to be the only one here who actually understood what the letter was talking about.

Sometimes I feel like people just want to read or see what they anticipate or desire, rather than what's really written. Either that or people have serious reading comprehension deficiencies.

(On a side note, I really love the irony of Equus's name considering how he/she is always kind of on top of the logic of a situation when so many others are usually....well, you know.)

Native1 (anonymous profile)
February 22, 2013 at 4:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Yeah you know those know it alls.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 22, 2013 at 4:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Chick-Fil-A wants you to eat more chicken, but not kale!

http://finance.yahoo.com/blogs/the-ex...

Corporate bullies.

EastBeach (anonymous profile)
April 26, 2013 at 12:07 a.m. (Suggest removal)

What pigs. Who needs this kind of influence in the community.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 26, 2013 at 1:35 a.m. (Suggest removal)

yeah, voting with my feet, would never enter Chick-Fil-A. Thank you for the thoughtful letter, Mr. Selberg.
And Botany, when writing "In the end, it's the product and the price that consumers decide on, not much else matters" -- ah, at least you're clear about your values.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
April 26, 2013 at 3:56 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I wonder Carol Ruiz thinks.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
April 26, 2013 at 11:31 a.m. (Suggest removal)

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